More Money if Armed – School Security
Texas teachers packing heat to make $25K as armed ‘sentinels’ if bill passes
Texas teachers could be paid up to $25,000 to multi-task as armed “sentinels” in school, under a new proposal.
The idea is laid out in a new bill being considered by lawmakers, which was written in response to the deadly mass shooting at a Uvalde elementary school where 19 kids and two teachers were killed last year.
House Bill 13 would pay teachers or other school staffers to start packing heat at public and open-enrollment charter schools, but they would be required to take firearms and mental health training as well as learning first aid.
Aside from being armed, the appointed sentinels would be required to identify any student would might pose a risk to other kids.
For Texas conservatives, armed teachers are a solution to school shootings
Texas has already pioneered such training, the School Marshal Program, which allows teachers and administrators to carry handguns after an 80-hour training at academies overseen by the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement.
The program was enacted in 2013 and expanded under Governor Greg Abbott, a Republican. There are now 256 school marshals in Texas, up from 34 before a high school shooting in Santa Fe near Houston in 2018, the Commission said.
School Security Is Now a $3 Billion Dollar Annual Industry. Is There a Better Way to Protect Kids?
US taxpayers spend nearly $700 billion each year on K-12 public schooling, and that eye-popping sum shows no sign of slowing. In fact, as more non-academic programs are adopted in schools across the country, the price tag for mass schooling continues to swell even as achievement lags.
The Cost of School Security
One ballooning school expenditure is the vast amount of money allocated to school safety. US schools now spend an estimated $2.7 billion on security features, from automatically locking doors to video surveillance and facial recognition software. That amount doesn’t include the additional billions of dollars spent on armed guards at schools. Federal spending on school security is also rising, with the US Department of Homeland Security recently awarding a $2.3 million grant to train high school students how to act like first responders in the event of a mass casualty, like a school shooting.